The release of the highly anticipated ARPG Diablo IV has been met with both praise and criticism in the gaming world. Blizzard has made many efforts to act upon the endless feedback players have been giving since the launch of the game at the beginning of June 2023.
The gameplay loop and mechanics of Diablo IV offer players many different options and ways to gain experience and acquire loot to build up their character power. Diablo IV has offered in-game activities taking place out in the open world, that other players can also engage in, such as Helltide Events, Legion Events, and World Boss encounter events that all appear in the world of Sanctuary on the map at different times, effectively they are timed events that appear every so often with some showing up more frequently than others such as the Helltide Events that come every hour.
The Problem With World Boss Events In Diablo IV
There are currently 3 world bosses in Diablo IV, Ashava, The Pestilent, Wandering Death, and Avarice, The Gold Cursed. The world boss events in Diablo IV are unlocked for players once they have completed the main campaign story, after which the world boss events will show up on the world map of Sanctuary approximately every 6 hours which means there are only 4 encounters per day.
What that could also mean is that many players who have tight schedules to play the game or any game in general, may not see a world boss event for many playtime sessions, if at all, unless they get lucky when they log on to the game at the right time. This is one of the most common complaints regarding world bosses that have been brought up by the community both shortly before launch during the beta tests and has since become louder after launch.
To me, this is also an issue, however making world bosses as common as a 1-hour Helltide Event occurrence would just make the unique feature of world bosses trivial and it would lose its draw quickly, therefore I think a balance of reducing the time between world bosses can be shortened a few hours, for example, instead of 6 hours in between world bosses blizzard could shorten it to maybe 3 or 4?
World Bosses Get Deleted
Aside from the 6-hour gap between world boss events in Diablo IV which many players have shared their fair share of criticism, one of the main issues with world bosses in my opinion is that they are incredibly easy to defeat. The only time a world boss may pose some sort of challenge is when players are very under-geared and even then the world bosses still aren’t very challenging as they could be. In my experience leveling my Barbarian, I noticed world bosses would be dropped in just a few minutes, sometimes in just 2 minutes without experiencing all the phases properly, in other words, the world bosses get deleted! From what it seemed, it didn’t necessarily matter if there were more players or not, just 3-4 players could defeat a world boss very quickly. Some people have joked that world bosses can be defeated with eyes closed, funny as it may seem, that is likely a possibility.
Easy Repetitive Mechanics
World bosses in Diablo IV have weak repetitive mechanics that are easy to navigate and don’t pose any challenges. The attacks are very telegraphed and easy to predict. In all my encounters with world bosses in Diablo IV I rarely saw any players die, it seems the only way to die would be if a player is severely under-geared or if they go “AFK” or “AFC” (away from the controller for console players) in the middle of the boss fight. In the hardcore version of Diablo IV where death is permanent resulting in the loss of a character, world bosses may be an activity that does require extra vigilance to not make a mistake by standing somewhere you shouldn’t be.
Fight Phases Are Not Interesting
In my opinion, world bosses could have more different phases added to the mechanics of the fight. Currently, each of the 3 world bosses has 4 different phases which makes the boss become more dangerous as the phases progress. The phases are triggered when the boss’ health reaches a certain percentage, however as stated above, the difficulty is hardly noticeable or impactful for mid-level to higher-level players. In many cases when I took part in a world boss event, the group of players would defeat the boss before some phases could even begin.
Overall I can say that I did enjoy the encounters I had with world boss events in Diablo IV and I would agree that it is a great way to bring players together for a common goal in the online world of Sanctuary, however, of course, I believe the world boss events would be more fun if the difficulty level was increased.
Ultimately I believe the difficulty level should be increased mainly because as it currently stands the world boss events can get very repetitive and stale quickly. There are currently only 3 different world bosses that have their own mechanics and flavor but at the same time, all 3 are essentially the same ‘loot piñatas’ as they are commonly referred to in the Diablo IV community, which is an assessment I do agree with.
Although it hasn’t been confirmed as far as I know, it seems obvious that in time and throughout seasonal additions to Diablo IV that blizzard will add new world bosses which in effect will be increasing the variety of different world bosses that will spawn on the 6-hour timeline, however, we can only hope that they also increase the difficulty of the world bosses because of how they currently are, as stated above, it could be said that a world boss in Diablo IV could be defeated with your eyes closed, maybe one day, if not already a confident streamer will do just that. Despite the fact that world bosses are easy bags of free loot they are still a nice break from nightmare dungeons, and it’s always nice to get loot.